Excellent | Worth a Detour
Tony’s Burgers | Best Mile High Hamburgers in California
Review by: Michael Stern
California Still Is a Hamburger State
Before the term California Cuisine signified elitist fare, southern California rightfully boasted of its hamburgers. So many things have changed in what once was known as the Golden State, but hamburgers remain a strong suit. For proof, tuck into one of the mile high hamburgers at Tony’s.
A Burger For Every Appetite
The menu lists thirty-two different configurations. Choose from eight types of slider, a half-dozen “chicken burgers,” a salmon burger, a turkey burger, and a meat-free garden burger. Tony’s Classic really does deserve its title. Lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and pickles adorn a six-ounce round of char-broiled beef. To these common condiments, add Tony’s “secret sauce,” which is pink and mayonnaisey. As is true of paradigmatic old-school California burgers, the festoonery makes it a sight to behold. Even this most basic variation rises so high from its plate that it arrives with a sharp knife plunged down through the top of the bun. The knife serves two purposes. It holds it all together. And it will cut the monstrous mountain of eats into bite-size pieces. Lifting the whole thing like you would a modest-sized burger defies logic.
More elaborate variations defy convention. Order The Hulk, for instance, and you get three beef patties (18 ounces), a fistful of bacon, and three different cheeses dressed to a fare-thee-well. The Cathedral City Express includes grilled pineapple slices, both grilled and deep fried onions, and chorizo sausage. Choose from among hot chile-topped burgers, breakfast burgers layered with eggs, and a cross-fit burger that substitutes big fresh leaves of lettuce for the bun. That last one is popular among the protein-eating muscle-builders that come from the gym just a few doors down. It consists of beef, bacon, an egg, avocado, and grilled onions.
On the Side
Good companions for mile high hamburgers include vigorously seasoned, fresh-cut French fries as well as fries topped with garlic, cheese, or truffle oil. There are sweet potato fries and slices of beer-battered, deep fried avocado, and as well as fine sweet and sour cole slaw.
Watch the Game and Have a Beer (or a Milk Shake)
Ambience is sports-bar pubby. TVs on the wall show sports events. The drink menu includes a large selection of beers and margaritas as well as milk shakes. In addition to indoor seats, there is plenty of sidewalk seating with a view of the shopping center.
Directions & Hours
|Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
|Credit Cards Accepted